Sunday, November 16, 2008

String Quilts Match Economic Times & 2 new books

On my way to my quilt guild Thursday evening I drove through Montecito and saw the begining of the fires there. The sky was so black, the ocean on one side and the hills on the other, with two big orange flames that could be seen from afar. During the meeting we were told the electricty had gone out for some of the homes in the fire area. If things weren't bad enough for those in dangerous areas, some people were unable to get their cars out of their garage or their private gate. Can you imagine, seeing the flames, receiving the 911 call to leave immediately, and then be stuck isnside your property with a car loaded with gas! I don't know how this is so, but no one was killed in the fires there.

I left guild early thinking the freeway may be closed and fortunately it was not. Since then our local news has been about nothing but fires; east and south of us, they continue to rage. So much beauty is lost when the fires come. Arnold, our govenor, said today that there is no longer a fire season in California. Now fires are all year long. That's true. He said it was due to the climate changes connected to global warming.

In one mobile home park over 500 homes were desicrated. Many many families are homeless today since the fires began on Thursday evening. And we Americans, me included, are focusing on the economy, unemployment and stock market thinking that things couldn't get much worse. Let's take a moment and count our many blessings.

This week I put a new article on my website String Quilts Match the Economic Times, Past and Present. The quilts shown are from my collection. I think there is a surprise in it. Let me know if you found the surprise. It's a connection for lack of a better term. No, it's not candy or fabric- sorry! It may bring a smile to your face though, and that's worth getting. :)

Diane Shink, my friend and quilt history buddy has co-authored a quilt book with Karen Neary, Canadian Heritage Quilting — Quick Creative Designs, a 128-page book that delves into 16 vintage Canadian quilts, many with a strong Maritime connection... Ms. Shink researched and wrote the historical details for each quilt featured in the book. Ms. Neary created the modern patterns. click here for a Canadian news article about the book

The book has just been published in Canada and I am thrilled for Diane. She told me last week that it's on Amazon. Diane lives in Montreal, collects antique quilts with a star pattern, any star, and she collects Aprons. She teaches, writes, is an appraiser and a member of AQSG.

Are you looking to make some fast but wonderful quilts or wallhangings for Christmas gifts? Are you aware of the technique that uses no bias, no set-in Y seams and no diamond shapes, yet results in a Star of Bethlehem, or Lone Star pattern?

Big One-Star Quilts by Magic is written by Nancy Johnson-Sebro. It is her second book using this technique for big stars with 14 new star patterns, I recommend in my review that you use an all-over tight print or marble or hand dyed looking fabric for the rectangles and squares that form the Star's diamonds. This will trick the eye, leaving the horizontal or vertical seams in the Texas dust. No one will be the wiser.

It looks to me like a weekend would take it from start to finish. Nancy goes green by providing 14 patterns for the back that use the scraps from the front.


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